Private Student Loans
Before applying for a private loan, please be aware that for U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents who meet other eligibility criteria:
- Free or lower-cost Title IV federal, state, or school student financial aid may be available in place of or in addition to a private education loan.
- Federal education loans are available for eligible students who do not demonstrate financial need.
- A private education loan may reduce eligibility for free or lower-cost financial aid with the school's financial aid office.
- You are strongly encouraged to pursue the availability of free or lower-cost financial aid with an advisor in the Georgia Tech Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.
Applying for a Private Loan
- Applications are made by a student directly to a participating lender.
- All private loan lenders are required to have you complete a Private Education Loan Applicant Self-Certification.
- The entire application process may take up to six weeks.
- Students must be accepted into a degree-seeking program.
Do you have one or more of these special situations?
- Less than half-time enrollment
- Paying a previous term balance
- Participating in School Registered Co-Op
- Not meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
If any of the above applies, you should discuss your special situation with your private lender before completing the application to make sure that they will lend to you. Some private lenders will not lend to students who have one or more of the special situations mentioned above.
Getting help with the Self-Certification Form
Our office can provide the financial information (Section 2) required to complete this form. Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org and include the following information:
- Your name
- Your Georgia Tech ID number
- The loan period* (start and end date) for the loan
Our office will strive to reply to your email with the required information within two business days.
If the lender provided the financial information to you, verify these figures with our office and discuss financing options before proceeding.
*Note about loan periods: Be sure your loan period falls within one academic year. At Georgia Tech, the Fall, Spring, and the following Summer term are considered one academic year.
Completing the Application Process
On receipt of (1) your application, (2) the Private Education Loan Applicant Self-Certification, (3) any requested supporting documents, and (4) a successful credit check, lenders typically require school certification by the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid at Georgia Tech. This is a separate form and in addition to the "self-certification."
Allow a minimum of three weeks for completion of the school certification. Keep in mind that lenders may take another two weeks to disburse a check (processing times vary from lender to lender). It is important to be aware of the fee payment deadline. Be sure to plan so that your funds will be received in advance of that date. The Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid will not issue deferments or extensions of the fee payment deadline based on anticipated receipt of these loans.
Choosing a Lender
Many private lending institutions offer loans to students and families seeking assistance to meet expenses related to attendance at Georgia Tech. There are an increasing number of these loans and the terms of these loans change frequently.
Our office is not permitted to recommend specific lenders, but we provide access to the names of lenders that Georgia Tech students have used. In addition, we can offer these suggestions:
- know that many of the larger lending institutions in the nation participate in educational loan programs
- review the terms of the program carefully
- read the fine print
- check with the lender for the most current terms
- check minimum/maximum annual loan limits
- compare the combination of interest rate, fees, and repayment terms since these determine the total amount repaid over time
- some offer interest rates that are adjusted monthly, some quarterly, and some annually
- check fees charged
- check for deferred interest and/or principal while enrolled in school
Keeping Loans Current
Always keep your lender informed of any name or address changes. Notify your lender in writing if any of the following events occur before your loan is repaid:
- You change mailing addresses
- You fail to enroll at the school that certified the loan application
- You transfer to another school
- You graduate or withdraw from school
- You change your name
Page last updated/reviewed 05/31/16